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Quotes: Coughlin, Pope, & Robinson

Posted Aug 3, 2013

Quotes from Head Coach Tom Coughlin, TE Coach Mike Pope, and TE Adrien Robinson.

Head Coach Tom Coughlin

We are in the rain. We’re going to have to go inside again, it looks like. So two of our first seven, thank God we have (the field house). Look at it that way. I doubt if anybody has any questions, so I’ll just move to practice if you don’t mind.

Q: How excited are you to go to Canton and to see Bill Parcells?
A: I’m excited. I’m excited to celebrate Coach Parcells’ induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. I’m going to honor him, but we’re there to celebrate with him and his family on this incredibly nice occasion; a celebration of the apex of someone’s career; the idea that we do throw this ‘great’ word around in common usage today much, much too often, but Bill Parcells is a great football coach.

Q: When you go there, is there any part of you that maybe someday…
A: I don’t even want to hear that kind of stuff today. I’m sorry to say it that way, but that’s not what this day is about. This day is about Coach Parcells, period.

Q: Is there anything in particular that really sticks out that you learned from him?
A: It was just the way that he went about his business and the organization went about their business; continuity, the winning, the high expectation level put by Bill on his players and his ability to gauge right away whether it was championship quality or not and his ability to communicate that in a fluent ‘New Jerseyan’ to the players.

Q: A couple of years ago, a young kid like Justin Pugh trying to earn a starting job probably wouldn’t have reported a headache the next morning. Can you talk about how that’s changed with concussions and the awareness?
A: This situation here would have been reported at any time. He didn’t feel well when he got inside and coming to the meeting was not an easy thing for him, he did. I don’t think there’s any question about that… That was proper. That’s the thing that he should have done. I don’t think even at any time would anyone, who couldn’t really function to capacity, would not bring that to the attention to the trainers or doctors.

Q: How is Justin doing today?
A: He’s getting better. He’s feeling better.

Q: Are you happy with the way David Diehl has kind of re-sculpted his body after 11 years?
A: Slim and trim. We may want him a little bit heavier. Whatever way he can perform to the best of his ability, that’s where we want him.

Q: Do you know if he can perform at this weight?
A: We’ll see, won’t we? We’re going to have a chance to see, but he moves really well and he’s done a good job that way and he knows himself the best. He’s been doing this a long time. We have confidence in that, but we’ll see how that goes.

Q: What about just his ability to be there every day?
A: That’s a nice thing to be. That’s a good thing to be in our business. Be there every day, be reliable, be dependable, and know what you’ve got. It’s still a huge factor in our profession. It really is.

Q: Of all the factors that went into having camp here as opposed to Albany, how big of a factor was a day like today and your ability to move into your field house with the rain?
A: It was a big factor. No doubt about it. However, it was one of the factors. That shouldn’t be used in any kind of a way against the University at Albany. Mayor Jennings told me that if that was the case, they’d find a way to have one of these facilities there. The fact that the CBA and the way it’s conducted today and the fact there’s only one practice, that had an awful lot to do with it; at least the argument that was posed. I didn’t make that decision. Naturally, Mr. Mara and Mr. Tisch made the decision, but that was the way that I would present it with the CBA the way it is in one practice.

Q: How is Corey Webster doing? Is he feeling better?
A: Yeah, he does. But he seems to be doing okay. Hopefully it’s not going to be long.

Q: Is Hakeem still going to practice on Tuesday?
A: I would hope. That’s the plan.

Q: What have you seen from Damontre Moore in camp?

A: He’s been a young man that’s gotten our attention and we’re excited about watching his progress.

Q: What have you seen from both Jonanthan Hankins and Shaun Rogers?
A: They’ve both had their days and times when they’ve been impressive and both are working hard. And again… some idea about what the possibilities are when you utilize that kind of talent, so going forward it’s going to be interesting to watch.

TE Coach Mike Pope

Q: Will Adrien Robinson be on the field this year?

A: Absolutely, and Larry Donnell; both of those guys. In this position of tight ends here, we have a revolving door in the meeting room because players continue to come through here. That's the fun thing for me because I never look at that and say 'ah geez, we just got this guy training' That's our job here. But the challenge of teaching and training these young guys, getting them in the program, is a lot of fun. Why I still do this, is exactly for that. It's training and getting these young guys to do some things that they've never done before. It's fun to watch that.

Q: So if Kevin Boss was still here you'd be retired?
A: Well, I didn't say that. I wouldn't mind if he was still here. But they move on. That's just a part of it. It's a young man's league today. It's not just this position, it's happening all over. Fortunately, our personnel department collectively has been able to go out and secure players, either by trade, as we did in some cases, or free agents, as we did with Brandon Myers. They've been able to go out and find young players who really weren't drafted and been able to bring them in and train them. It is a position that, because of the salary cap, that only very few persons get a high percentage of that salary cap. It's a developmental position. There are a number of them in the NFL today. It's important that you do get guys that are the right kind of guys that have the size and at least a high-end amount of talent. They don't have to be superstars, because you'd be paying them high if they were. But you develop them and make them very good contributors to your football team. Generally these are the guys that are not prima-donnas. Every day is a 'prove it' day for them. They kind of have that free agent mentality. In Brandon Myers, we've got a guy from the Raiders for whom this is the 5th offensive system he's played in. Coming here, you'd think 'he's played in the NFL,' but he came in here with just the right attitude and gets mad at himself when he doesn't execute things the way he knows they should be done. So we do have guys that are helping each other and coaching each other a little bit along the way. Bear Pascoe's been a vital part of this, because he is the only guy here really who has playing time. Lose him and Hynoski early in our spring camps, and so Bear goes to fullback, but he's still able to play tight end and all those other positions. Because he's been through it, he can work with these young guys. He's a real valuable asset. We take these young guys and try to grow them up. We want to get Adrien on the field. He's a terrific target and runs well. We'd like to see if Larry Donnell can make a contribution. Certainly size and talent-wise, he has that. But he missed all the spring and minicamps because of a broken foot, so he's virtually just starting right now. So, how fast can those guys grow? The faster they grow, the more effective we're going to be. I do think we have, size-wise, the biggest group I've ever worked with. These guys are 278, 280, 282, and they can run fairly well. We haven't had that around here since I've been here. That's since 1982. We haven't had that size player. So that should add to our running game on the edge, and should enable us to block some of these defensive ends and some of these outside linebackers that are in this league now. Hopefully, with the quickness and speed of our running backs, that can be a huge contribution: the way we block the edge of the offense and are more effective in the run game.

Q: How good could a goal line set be with those two guys (Robinson and Donnell) if you can get them around?
A: Well, effective as run-blockers. But the other thing is even in the approach to the drill run. Here are two guys that can jump like gazelles. So if the ball goes up, I'm going to take the'on the fact that one of them has got a chance to get it. A lot of our defensive backs back there are six feet tall, and can't possibly elevate with these guys. So if they can get the right things done, learn to read the coverage, and get in the right place so that the QB can trust them, then I think they can be very effective in the scoring zone.


TE Adrien Robinson

Q: It must be a big difference from last year.
A: It is. I’m getting a lot more playing time and understanding the offense a lot better, so that’s probably the biggest difference.

Q: Does it give you confidence in knowing what’s going on?
A: Yeah. When you’re not thinking as much, you can play fast. So it allows you to play faster and you have to make decisions quick, so that’s part of it.

Q: Was last year hard for you not playing a lot?
A: It was a little frustrating, but I understood the reasons why it happened. I talked to Coach Pope every week. He told me just try to learn something every day and there’s something to watch for and that’s what I did and in the big picture I think it helped me out a lot.

Q: What do you see yourself as a tight end? There’s guys that run around and catch passes and there’s guys that block. What do you see yourself as?
A: I think I can do both. It’s going to be pretty much kind of like my first year of getting playing time, so I think we’ll have to wait and see how the coaches decide to use me. But I think I can run and block.

Q: Do you think with Bear Pascoe having to do some fullback stuff that opens up even more opportunities for you?
A: Yeah. In certain sets I’ll get more playing time because Bear knows every position and the more you know, the more you can do. So that’s what I’m trying to work towards, but I think it helps me out.

Q: Was there anything you learned from watching Martellus Bennett last year?
A: With being a rookie last year, coming in I didn’t really know much about releases and blitzes and reading coverages and overall being a professional and Martellus helped me out a lot with that and so did Bear and even this year Brandon Meyers is helping me out. I’m trying to learn from everybody.

Q: With some of the things that Martellus does, do you see yourself being able to do a lot of the things he did?
A: Yeah. We have kind of the same build. We’re both athletic. We can run, so I think I can do it.

Q: Are you excited to show what you’re capable of?
A: Yeah. I’m excited because I didn’t get to play last year as much as I wanted to, so I’m really excited for this year.

Q: The fans don’t have an idea about you yet.
A: Yeah. That’s fine.

Q: You have a chance to make your first impression.
A: Yeah.

Q: Did you ever feel any pressure from the JPP of tight ends label that Jerry Reese gave you?
A: No. I didn’t feel pressure from it. I didn’t really think it was a big deal until people started talking about it. I mean it’s still not really a big deal. I think he was just comparing our athleticism.

Q: Did you ever feel like it created these expectations?
A: No because I got drafted, so there are already expectations and I have expectations for myself. So trying to live up to those is probably more important.

Q: Did you take it as a compliment?
A: Yeah, for sure. It’s definitely a compliment, but I’m still a rookie coming in and still have to prove myself. So that’s what I’m trying to do.

Q: Did Jerry ever explain that to you or mention that to you?  Because he said that on draft day.
A: No

Q: Do you think one day someone will be called the Adrien Robinson of defensive ends or something?
A: I hope so.  

Q: JPP has done so much in so little time here.  What do you think Jerry meant by that?  He said the athleticism, but there’s got to be something more than that.  I mean, he didn’t have a lot of big numbers in college, JPP.  He was kind of like an athlete who they projected.  Do you see that? Did you also?
A: Yeah, I think that also goes into it.  The potential being the biggest thing.

Q: What’s the most catches you’ve had in a year?  
A: Twelve, my senior year was the most catches I had.

Q: How about in high school?
A: High school, maybe twenty-something my senior year.  We ran the ball a lot too.

Q: So that’s part of it too, JPP had a lot of sacks.  You couldn’t look at the page and say we’ll look at this production.  Is that frustrating you?  Is it like the tip of the iceberg for you?  What do you think about that?
A: Frustrating how? Like not getting stats and everything?

Q: Yeah, you just look at the numbers and say, there’s not numbers there.  
A: Back then, it was kind of frustrating because when you’re getting recruited, and when you’re in college, stats are what gets you exposure, helps get you to the next level.  I got lucky, my high school coach took me to a lot of different camps, so I was able to get exposure.  By the time you get through college, you just understand the system.  Understand what your role is in the offense and that wasn’t my role.  I would love to get the ball more, but whatever is going to help the team win.  That’s fine.

Q: Is blocking the most important thing for you right now?
A: Yeah, I think that’s definitely the most important thing.  Having the right technique, stepping with the right foot and stuff like that.  Plus, I’m a bigger guy so learning how to use size to my advantage helped me out.